tv Charlie Rose Bloomberg January 15, 2014 8:00pm-9:01pm EST
2006, i flew to iraq and visited our troops there. -- i was struck by the fact that all of them were the very same age as the students i had left behind. except these 18 to 25-year-olds were wearing full body armor, carrying assault rifles, and living in peril, putting their lives on the line to protect all .f us, all of you >> robert gates is here. he served as secretary of defense for two presidents, george w. bush and barack obama. he spent 26 years at the cia and the national city council. this week, he made international headlines with the lease of his new book. "duty am a. memoirs of a secretary at war" it gives a behind the scenes look at the white house and the pentagon under both presidents.
some say it is one of the most candid accounts of washington ever written. i am pleased to have bob gates back at this table. so please explain your next to me. [laughter] neck to me. [laughter] is that myell people wife and i were sitting at the table and that happened to mention casually that i was thinking about going back to government. the thing i knew, i went up in the er with a broken neck. [laughter] and she said i don't know what happened. seriousness, pure clumsiness. i tripped on a rug in our house on new year's day. just crashed into a wall. i have to wear this apparatus for a total of 12 weeks. but there is no pain and no impairment. well, we'll see if there is any impairment. at least no physical impairment. [laughter] the rest remains to be seen. >> when president obama asked
you to stay to be his secretary of defense, he said what? you promised him a year, right? >> when we had a clandestine meeting, at the end of our conversation, i said, well, why don't we think about in terms of a year and say that. he said, it's not say anything that we will think in those terms. at my farewell ceremony, i talked about the president asking me to stay on and on and on. [laughter] >> why did you decide that this was the time to leave, the moment you did leave? >> when i left, i had been the secretary of defense for four years. we had been a war every single day into places. job longerin the than for my sisters. -- i had been on the
job longer than four of my predecessors. trying to help salvage two wars, which at the beginning of 2007 were not going well, i ended up at war with congress and at war with my own building. and at times with the white house and other agencies. so it was kind of a constant gett for civil day to things done, whether it was cutting wasteful programs in the budget, whether it was prolonging the surgeon iraq, whether it was getting the right equal to the troops. everything was a fight with somebody or another. >> and you are exhausted. >> i was just spent. >> there is also the emotional weight. >> this is something i write about. , had got to the point where every time that i talked to the true or even when i start talking about the troops, i
would start to choke up. 2008, i begannd telling the troops, both in iraq and afghanistan, but also in service academies and elsewhere that i had come to feel a personal responsibility for each of them as though they were on my own sons and daughters. point towardthe the beginning of 2011 when i began to realize that my determination to protect them against additional wars was inbably clouding my judgment terms of hardheaded national security. >> you have an example of that in which you are more worried about them and protecting them then maybe making the right decision about national security? factorink it was a real in my opposition to our intervention in libya. at one point in the situation room, i said to people, can i
just finished the two wars we are already in before you all go looking for another one? there is a scene in the movie whereburg, at the end generally and general long stream are sitting around -- general long street is sitting around the camp fire. long street is beloved by his troops and lee admonishes him. mustn't love the army so much that you're not prepared to sacrifice them. i thought of putting that in the book. but because it was fiction i decided not to. that line ran through my mind fairly regularly. >> was made this deep connection to the troops? >> i think it got started by the fact that i came to the job from being president of a big university. so every day for four and a half years that i had been president of a endemol, every day --
a&m,dent of a every day going around with students who are in t-shirts and backpacks and flip-flops going around about their day. overnight, i saw kids exactly the same age wearing full body armor am i carrying assault rifles, putting their lives at risk, living in wretched conditions. and it had a huge impact on me. these kids, the same aged kids were putting their dreams on hold and putting their lives at risk to protect the dreams of all those kids back home as well as the rest of us. that decided early on signing condolence letters was not enough. i started handwriting parts of the letters. then i felt, as you are
suggested, i didn't want these kids to ever become statistics for me. i wanted to know about them. so i asked that the packages that brought the materials to me include their hometown newspaper stories and interviews with their parents and their coaches and their brothers and sisters or their wives and their pastors and so on, kids who love to fish and hunt or kids who were aimless and found a calling in the military or kids who were really good students and came from well-to-do families and decided this was something they needed to do for the country. it was just the full range. the book is dedicated to the men and women of the united states armed forces. and i wrote it for them and for their families and for the america that sent them. written fora book the belt way.
for washington, d c. i wanted them to see the passion with which these issues were debated, the way presidents as well as i and others wrestled with these questions of life and death and success and failure and to humanize this in the washington world in a way that i or't think the news media historians perhaps captured it. >> i will ask you some questions that you have been asked before. why now? some believe that you shouldn't write about a sitting president if you have been given a position of high command and influence. suggested, i think that the issues that i described in issues.k are ongoing
decisions relevant to made tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow. >> whether it is to attack a syrian militarily, whether it is to attack iran's nuclear program if the negotiations don't work out, how to deal with china, had to do with russia, had to deal with close allies like israel and saudi arabia. what should the shape of the defense budget look like? what kind of military capabilities do we need when we're making decisions to deploy military forces? what do we know about the other side? what do we know about what we're getting into? and those issues are being debated today and they are questions of war and peace. they are questions about our national security going forward. another question is what is the impact of a polarized and paralyzed congress in the ability to conduct a coherent
national security or foreign- policy? so i believe these issues are relevant to today. and quite frankly, when it comes to reporting on conversations with the president, i think when people actually read the book, they will see that most of the conversations that i write about actually portray those presidents in a positive light, in the sense that they are asking tough questions. they are pushing back. ity are not being spoonfed -- spoonfed information, but are being -- but are wrestling in a good way with very tough problems.
the chairman of the joint chiefs? is that wethe first almost always make wrong assumptions. first assumption we almost always get wrong is that it will be short, as i suggested earlier, that we will get this job done. you go back to world war i. this will be short. we will be done by the end of summer and it's all over. >> i think that is what secretary rumsfeld and the general thought about iraq. afghanistan and iraq. they became long and grinding wars. >> so the mistake is? >> first of all, being very careful about when you deploy military force. of having a better idea consequences, trying to examine -- if we do this, then what happens next? that's why i opposed the use of force in serious. imposing -- in syria.
imposing a no-fly zone or humanitarian zone in syria means attacking syrian air defenses. that is an act of war. what are the consequences of us attacking serious? -- attacking syria? what are the second and third order consequences? i think we don't think about those things as much as we should. i make the point in the book and it actually is -- i thought it would be one of the more controversial things in the book and, maybe after people read it, it will be, but i make the point in the book that i believe presidents in recent decades have been too quick to pull a gun to solve a problem. and using military force as a first choice rather than the last resort. >> do you think president obama agrees with you on that? >> you know, we never discussed
it quite in those terms, but i suspect that he probably does. >> that is amazing to me. and i'll are conversations, you never discussed the idea that this country may be too quick to use the military option. >> i did talk to him about that. in fact, in the context of the libya's question, i made that point. >> and syria? syria exploded after i left office. >> this book's reaction, you said it was not written for the beltway, but that is where the reaction has come. what did you say about biden? what did you say about former secretary of state clinton? i went and you say about the president and are you trashing the president? what do you make of the criticism of you? >> as i said before, i think the narrative of the book was hijacked in the early reporting. most people had not read the book.
the book doesn't even come out until tomorrow. >> but there are copies out there for review. after -- most of the press got them after the initial couple of stories. >> so they were writing about what the rednecks irks. >> they were writing about what they read in other newspapers. and i think there was this narrative put out there that this is an anti-obama book, that this is a book that takes issue with a strategy and everything in afghanistan and it is completely wrong. book ivery clear in the supported every single one of the president's decisions on afghanistan, from the day he took office until the day i left office. what isher than that, it about what has been said in the year the reaction that you find exactly wrong? >> hi think that the reoccupation -- the problem is that it is not exactly wrong in that they do have quotes in the book that are accurate quotes
from the book, but they are out of context and so for example, let me give you just one example can be a lot of people -- one example. a lot of people are making much of the fact when i have a conversation with the president about iran and the president is saying i am not making a decisions and he looks around the room and there is a pretty limited number of people in the room. and he said for those of you writing your memoirs, let the record show i am not making any decisions. and i say how offended i was by that. but what is missing is a context. we were talking about specific military options against iran and what offended me was the notion that he thought anybody would write about specific military options dealing with that potential adversary of the united states. subjecthat very narrow to which i was referring. takenre are these things
out of context. i will give you another example. quoted item about secretary clinton talking about her opposition to the surge being political, i made clear in it book that, first of all, got my attention because i had been on the other side of that issue in the spring of 2007, defending the surge. so i was surprised that it was said in front of me. that heother was grabbed my attention because it was such an anomaly. in all the time that we work -- when, i never once she was secretary of state -- i never once heard her bring domestic politics into the conflict -- into the conversation of a discussion of an issue. it was always what is the national interest here? >> it seems to me that lots of decisions like that are made with a clinical context if they
are politicians. >> i think the issue is -- the thing that caught my attention was that she made that statement in front of me. >> oh. and i cite another example, particularly the first months, mike mullen and i would sit in the situation room and there would be this unadulterated bush bashing, the miserable state of the world that he left the hind din. the president, the vice president, the secretary of state of state, the national security advisor and so on. and what a miserable state of the world bush and his team left us in. >> and you are on the team. >> and mike mullen and i were looking at each other and saying, what, are we invisible? do they not see that we were integral parts of that team? so i think it was in that vein that hillary's statement grabbed my attention.
it was very much an aside in the context of her strong support for going for the afghan surge. >> there seems to be some misunderstanding about this. i want to figure out exactly what you saw and heard and what you have written. it is about the president and afghanistan and the man that you met, when he asked you to be secretary of defense, you have described almost as perfect pitch with respect to the military and the use of the military. wrecked? -- correct? >> correct. but you believe that he supported the surge in afghanistan and the addition of troops because he believed it was the right decision to make after an agonizing process. >> virtually all of his political advisors and others in the white house, including the vice president were very much against the decision that he made. he made a decision he believed was in the national interest
despite the advice of his political advisers and everybody else here in >> the president began to feel that he was being boxed in, that there was an effort by the military to put him in a place where his options were restrict it. did he believe that first? >> let me dry distinction. first of all, when the president made his decision to intervene in libya, he told me that it was a really close call, that it was a really tough decision because there were just almost all downsides as far as he was concerned. but he was persuaded by secretary clinton and others that we knew to do this with and for our allies. inn he made his decision november 20 -- november 2009 for the afghan surge, he did not express such reservations to me. i believe the president, when he
made those decisions, believed that strategy would work. along, through 2010, significant elements of that strategy clearly were not working because that strategy included getting pakistan to stop its hedging and help to the taliban. it included trying to get the afghan government to be less corrupt and more competent. and as the civilian side of the was not producing, i think it said his concerns and i talk about that in the book. >> right. >> the irony -- and i write part this -- and the one of the strategy that was working reasonably well, although slower than anticipated by the military, was the military side. i supported the president's decisions in the truth is,
despite what i have written, the president has continued to stick with the strategy laid out in november 2009 and then reaffirmed in december 2010 to this day in terms of full withdrawal by december 2014. .> which you support >> which i support. and i think that negotiating the follow-on agreement with the afghans is the right thing. leaving a residual forces executive right thing. my concern with the president on into twoan cell buckets. suspicion of his the motives of some of his senior military leaders. and so didbelieved everybody else in the white house that the military leadership was trying to box him to make ace him
significant additional commitment of troops in afghanistan. and there was cause for him to be suspicious. >> a reason to be suspicious. >> yes. in september 2000 nine, admiral mullen, the chairman of the joint chiefs, was up for reconfirmation. and in his confirmation hearings , he strong supported a significant addition of troops in afghanistan. later, general mcchrystal, the commander in afghanistan, his assessment of where we stood in afghanistan leaped. basically saying that, if there wasn't a significant increase in troops, there would be mission failure. >> do you believe that general mcchrystal leaked that memo? >> i do believe -- first of all, i don't know. i don't believe general mcchrystal leaked it.
>> but someone with his interest -- >> may have. >> and the president thought he came from the military. >> obsolete. and frankly at this point, the odds probably favor that. and then, just a week after that, general mcchrystal gives a speech in london. and in the q and a, the question-and-answer period afterward, he answers in a way that basically dismisses out of hand the option the vice president had been putting forward in our internal councils. >> which is a kind of war terrorism. >>) of course, that late. so you have in the space of about two and half weeks three different -- oh and one other thing is general betray trees gives a new view to a columnist who had been a former george w. bush speechwriter in which he talks about the need for more troops. so you take all these four things together and there was,
as i write in the book, legitimate suspicion in the white house that this was an to forceted campaign the president's hand. i didn't believe it then. i don't believe it now. >> that there was an orchestrated campaign. >> correct, that there was an orchestrated campaign to force the president's hand. what's but the president had a legitimate reason to believe there was. why can easily understand those in the white house come including the president, believed that the military was trying to do this and that it was an orchestrated plan. and i tried to dissuade the president of that, but i was not successful. so that was one area where i was concerned, the suspicion of the president. i understood the origins of it and, as i write, it actually began as early as february-march 2009 when he made the first troop increase and the vice
president felt that the president was getting the bum's rush by the military. the second was the president passion inlic calling for success in afghanistan. and i put it more in the framework of the troops. if you ask young men and women to go out and risk their lives, you need to be out front, it seems to me, as commander-in- chief in telling them why their cause is noble, why their cause sacrificed why their is worthwhile. in the fall of 2009, i told the president don't pick a middle option. either agree to a significant troop increase or make a dramatic decision in the other direction, meaning a radically reduced -- don't do it halfway.
and the president was committed. the president made tough decisions. and i admire him for that and i supported all of that. that -- i mean, our troops are not -- they are very smart. that he did saying not make enough speeches to let the men and women on the ground know he supported them. >> i am faulting him for not going out and defending a war and a mission that he was sending young men and women out to accomplish. and they need to hear that from their commander-in-chief. >> said he was supporting them but not saying, look, this is what we need to accomplish. >> this notion that i support the troops but not their mission -- >> he was not saying i don't support the mission. >> in the absence, as i write in
the book, i don't have -- i told rahm emanuel, i don't have any problem with his speeches and talking about exit strategies and how we get out of afghanistan. >>) because he campaigned on that idea and you would like that president to have done it because you, too, were tired of war and wanted to see an extraction from iraq and afghanistan. but i told him the manual that he needs to take ownership of this war. >> after afghanistan, people figure that he did on the war. let me just ask this. so he began in private conversations with you to express some of his concerns. he worried about how well it was going, was the strategy working in that kind of thing. don't all presidents do that in private counsel with people that they trust and who have important understanding of the nature of the war? didn't lyndon johnson do that about vietnam? >> sure.
>> both generals said this may not work. eisenhower's famous speech about d-day said, you know, if this troops -- i take responsibility. >> and i write about the fact that george w. bush had exactly the same reservations about his strategy in iraq. 2006, hee end of essentially changed his whole team. >> what's wrong with having reservations and skepticism and expressing with privately to your secretary of defense? >> absolutely nothing wrong. >> unless he writes about it that the president didn't believe in the mission. >> in the absence of the president speaking publicly in support of the mission, that is the concern i had and it goes back to the beginning of the conversation about the troops. and what was on my mind is those kids need to hear from the guy them, why what they are
doing is valuable and we are not in this for a time. we want you to be successful. >> and we -- and if we are asking you to sacrifice your life, we promise you it is because it's for a cause we believe in and one that is winnable. >> that is why never said anything about this while i was still office. >> we still have men and women in afghanistan. >> my point is they know the score. they know what they have not heard. and frankly, i think my book doesn't inform them of anything they don't already sense, don't already know. continues that, as we , thatfort in afghanistan the book will contribute to may be people saying getting this endgame right in afghanistan is important. >> just a point about today, we
look at a terrible situation in iraq. do you believe that, if in fact we left 10,000 troops there, this would not be happening? >> i think there are two reasons why iraq is facing the problems that it is. prime minister malki -- first of all, we handed over a very stable, pretty secure iraqis.2009-2010 to the in a creaky but reasonably working democracy in a middle east context. so we basically handed the situation to the iraqi government on a silver platter. one of the things that has created the problems is that prime mr. malki over the last done has essentially almost everything he could to antagonize the sunnis in iraq. he has tried to arrest a sunni vice president. he has arrested other sunni officials. it has not invested anything in
an bar problem that's an bar province to give them a stake in the government. he has not invested anything to give them ace stake in the government. that the wake up call came before falluja because he was here asking the present for help. >> the second is the serious and civil war -- the second is the there i thinkar that one of the contributions size was secondary in my point of view, but it was the presence of a david the trays, a lloyd austin who, in partnership with the ambassadors were able to bring the factions together in iraq, bring them together to dinner and make them talk to , pressure them to
engage and solve their problems, whether it was the shia and the kurds or the shia and the news and so on. -- because we had had a presence, we had leverage. think, hadverage, i we been able to maintain a i think we could have used that leverage over the last year or year and a half or so to try to push malki harder to be more inclusive. >> and therefore, it is essential, even though karzai being -- >> karzai. >> karzai. [laughter] difficultng therefore , unimaginably misunderstanding. >> i write in the book that karzai's probably our most challenging allied since charles de gaulle. what they both have in common is
that we put both of them in place, for all practical purposes, and they were solely dependent on us. and yet each wanted to be recognized as the leader of his tople and was very sensitive ride and sovereignty and so on. and i think we haven't paid enough attention to that piece of karzai. >> there is a critical difference between de gaulle in karzai, having to do with corruption and winning a war and other things. let me just go back to the president for example. there was a meeting that you described with you, general mullen and the president. he says do they not believe in me? is it because i did not serve? what is the issue here? say is a positive thing to to the secretary of defense. do i have a problem here? am i recording that correctly? >> this is one of the reasons, charlie.
i've been criticized for encoding some personal conversations. if you think of those private conversations, whatever port in the case of both presidents, i think they show the president in a febrile -- in a favorable light. they show the president pushing, disagreeing with the military, lessening the military and i completely support the president's approach that. i did a lot of that. i questioned the military a lot and push them and i fired a bunch of them. >> a bunch of the military leaders. but yeah, so pushing against these guys is exactly what the president ought to do. i think that the portrayal of these conversations shows the president's doing what president ought to do. >> you'd do object very much and you have said that the white that theyton was
were, in your own words, the int aggressive into king -- talking to four-star generals, the most aggressive in centralizing power in the white sinceand micromanaging the nixon white house. totally say they have gone that will better. >> and you hated that. >> again i make clear in the believe that the white house and the national circuit -- national security adviser need to drive the policy process. the big bureaucracies, defense, state -- i have seen this through my whole career. rarely if ever, they come up with a guy diaz or controversial ideas. that has to be driven by the white house and it has happened in virtually every presidency that i served. so i never had a problem with that. is whenlem that i have
they begin to become operational and when they are starting to micromanage military operations. when they interfere with the chain of command. those are the things that got under my skin. >> and they got under secretary clinton skin, too, didn't it? >> that was certainly my depression. at the you look difference between presidents, you say, number one, very different personalities. how so? >> first of all, i think president obama is very analytical. >> president bush is not? >> president was relied more on his gut, on instinct. think both were willing to revisit decisions. they both would argue that they don't. but as you point out, all
presidents do that. and particularly when it involves the use of military force. president bush changed strategies. and i would say that what insident obama did was, expressing his reservations -- and again -- and i probably don't go into this enough in the book -- on how during when he 10 it was the failure of the on howtary side -- during 2010 it was a failure of the nonmilitary side that said his concerns. >> support -- suppose you were the secretary of defense and there was a war that had public support, let's say, would you rather be serving under president obama or president bush? >> that is a very tough question. i'm not sure i know the answer. >> you don't.
what are the factors that would go into your decision? >> i guess my answer would be that i would be willing to serve under either one of them. >> but would one be better than the other? >> they both bring french strengths, but they both -- as i write in the book, i saw both make decisions that were contrary to their political interests but were in the national interest. there by getting my respect. >> the wisdom of going into iraq is not yet fully answered? for lack of wisdom? >> i read in the book that, for the iraq war to be viewed in a more positive light, historically, will depend on whether a decade or two or three from now, the ouster of saddam
hussein and the creation of a quasi-democratic government in iraq in a multiethnic state is seen as the first crack in the façade of authoritarianism throughout the middle east that eventually and with difficulty led to a more democratic region. and we won't know that for a long time. but i also say the truth is the war will always be tainted. and i've said this publicly even when i was in office. the war will always be tainted by the fact that it was launched on what turned out to be wrong premises above that there were weapons of mass to structure. >> in iraq today represents one of the great conflicts in the middle east, sectarian war. sunni versus shia. >> the problem that we face in the middle east and one of the reasons why what i have written
about war and these words in the isk has contemporary value that we are seeing major regional conflicts that have emerged in the middle east. sunni versus shia. authoritarian versus reformers. islamists. versus and then overlaid on all of that is whether artificially created states, such as libya, syria, and iraq, that contain historically adversarial ethnic groups, tribes and religions can hold together absent repression or whether centrifugal forces and historic forces will tear those countries apart. you have four very different but interconnected conflicts going on in the middle east now. it will be a big challenge for
the united states going forward and frankly that is one of the reasons why i think the book has contemporary value. towhat would be your device the president at this moment about that, the choices we have? everyday i read an article about how we no longer have the kind of influence we did have. because of all the factors you just suggested. we are in a much different place and there may be "a power vacuum" and some of the powers and some of the countries that may have looked to us for leadership don't do that anymore. >> i think there is a perception in the region that we are withdrawing. >> right. >> i think that perception can be corrected, but without military force. i think a military presence is important and i would argue for keeping the naval forces that we have in the region there. for continuing and expanding the military relationships we have with a number of traditional allies in the region. i think we need to work harder
at communicating with and bringing our allies in the persian gulf and jordan and elsewhere, bringing them in close so that they have a better sense of what we are thinking, what we are planning, where we are headed, where we can work together and so on. i think we can do all of those things. i think the administration -- i saw that cemetery hegel was out in the region. so i think they are -- obviously, secretary carries engagement in the palace -- secretary kerry's engagement in the palestinian issue is important. but in gauging war with their friends about what we can do with respect to serious -- to syria more aggressively and these other half lives i describe i think is important. >> what is your take on the agreement that is in the paper today, the whole notion of
nuclear accord with iran. that is the lead story in both "the washington post" and "the new york times." what is your take on that record -- on that accord? did we get something out of this? >> i believe that the united states had no choice but to say yes to a negotiation. this can beome ways seen as iran coming to the table -- iran coming to the table can be seen as a validation that the strategy of economic pressure that actually began with president clinton and was significantly intensified by president bush and more so by president obama brought them to the table. the key will not be the agreement today. the key is what happens in six months. and i would argue that the six
months need to be a definite deadline. there needs to be a date certain because the iranians, the persians are expert at rolling these things along and then, well, let's take another month or let's take another two or three months. so there is a real danger of these guys slow rolling us for a protracted ppt of time. period of time. there are still some positive periodhappens during the of this accord. but they do not stop or reverse the iranian nuclear program in the larger sense. that, first of all, there needs to be the said line. the u.s.in terms of congress and additional sanctions, i think the congress is wrong to pass additional sanctions now. but i think that the president ought to take it vantage of congress are being willing to impose dramatically increased
sanctions the day after that six-month deadline is reached. thatat the iranians know they will lose something significant, that they will suffer even more if there is no real agreement. and then finally, i really strongly believe that there should not -- we should not reach an agreement that leaves iran as a nuclear weapons threshold state. where they could -- to a weapon fairly quickly. >> to do that, we would have to have them dismantle some of the centrifuges and other things. >> yes. >> you spent your life in the cia rising to the top position there. naturally -- and you are naturally, i would assume, suspicious. [laughter] ofthere is an old line intelligence where they smell
flowers they look around for coffins. >> do you think it is possible that the iranians have finally said, look, this is not worth it. >> i'm not sure they know. i think they are playing this out to see -- i mean, you have two sides in this negotiation. you have the iranians wanting to change as little of their nuclear program as they can get away with and as much relief from the sanctions as they can get. and the position of the united states and our colleagues in this negotiation are just the reverse. how much of a reversal can we get of the nuclear program and how little of the sanctions do we have to to live -- to lift in order to force iran to do that? >> finally, there is edward snowden who is in russia. >> under the umbrella of protection of that famous
protector of human rights and civil liberties and privacy, vladimir putin. george bush said he looked into his eyes and saw a christian, i don't know what he said, and you said, when i look into his eyes, i saw a stone cold killer. would you under any circumstances support some kind of amnesty to get edward snowden back here? >> absolutely not. >> you are living in seattle, washington. you have another book after this one. what would you change now that this book is out there? did you go to far? are the things that you should have said you didn't? >> i don't think so, charlie. me make two let additional points. some folks accuse me of the proper say, saying things in this book that i didn't say when i was in office. believe me, there are no complaints in that book that i did not raise with the president or with people working for the president in the white house.
the white house chiefs of staff and so on. although i knowledge that i did not raise the micromanagement issue with the president, i certainly did with the chiefs of staff and national security advisers. so there is no issue in that book of which i did not express my views very forcefully what i was still in his. the other is, -- still in office. the other is, in terms of recording of conversations, more importantly the idea of whether i should publish this now, i would just ask interviewers and others to be sure and ask the same question of secretary diner, secretary pineda, and secretary pineda -- and secretary clinton when their books come out before president obama leaves office. >> there's finally this. for half years to write this. how long did it take you to write this? >> about 20 months. desk, in thisa
room here -- this is today's "washington post." i assume maybe that is where you fell. i don't know. [laughter] and you have another book you will write about leadership. >> it is really more about -- it is more of a book about how you lead change in the organizations, particularly big public organizations. having done it successfully at cia, texas a&m, the defense department. book.not a leadership it is more of a step-by-step -- here's how you can actually get things done in a public environment. this is one of the themes in the book that i underscore. despite my hidden rage at the congress for seating at the is i was ablefact to cut nearly three dozen major procurement programs that i
considered wasteful or unnecessary. i cut $180 billion of overhead over 10 years and get congressional support to do all of those things when most of my predecessors were lucky if they get to were three or four programs cut him and it was because of the way i work with congress. and what i say in there is a you can make this work, even in today's environment in washington. you can be successful and lead change. >> there is this. even though you made a joke about how you received your neck injury, when you venture consider going back to washington in the end, you aren't going back to washington. when you die, you have asked to have your final resting place at arlington national cemetery among the men and women. >> yes, in section 60. the two fought in afghanistan and iraq. >> correct. >> think you were coming. >> thanks, charlie.
>> "taking stock" for wednesday, january 15th, 2014. i am pimm fox. this hour, we'll focus on business and people that are more than meet the eye. i will be speaking with the chief executive of smithfield foods, the world's biggest producer of hogs and parts -- and pork. we will discuss the deal. also, we will talk about food safety. plus, the cheese executive of dsp joins us. it is the largest independent provider of eye care insurance coverage in the united states. a viral marketing.